You are on page 1of 2

Chris Bang

Section I: Setting and Context:
Bill Reed Middle School (BRMS) is a LISA (Loveland area Integrated School of the Arts) school
in the Thompson School District (TSD). This aspect of the school influences all core classes at
each grade level. This is just one aspect of the culture of BRMS; the demographics of the
students that attend BRMS are predominantly lower to middle class families (nearly half of the
students on at BRMS are eligible for free and reduced lunch). In my personal opinion it seems
that there is a lack of external communal support for the students. In this report I will present
the observations and experiences that I have had thus far in my student teaching placement. I
will first describe the school environment, as well as mention the code and conduct for TSD.
Secondly, I will describe some of the specific demographics, including notes about special needs
and education. Lastly, I will draw attention to the internal supports that BRMS offer students
(and the lack thereof external support).
BRMS is located a block East of Lovelands Downtown area: on the corner of 4th street and
Grant street. The school is rife with students from broken and troubled homes, and for a large
portion of the kids BRMS is an environment where students can go for shelter, comfort, and
communityin addition to receiving an education (Newlin). The school has a total of 660
students, of which 197 students are 8th graders, which is the grade that I teach. I will comment
more on specific demographic information later, but now I will comment on the Code and
Conduct of BRMS. The Code and Conduct of TSD applies to BRMS; however, the 8th grade
class is plagued with behavioral problems. Although the staff abides by the Code of Conduct,
everyday is a struggle to incentivize students to do what is expected of them. The main
problematic behaviors that the BRMS staff faces on a daily basis (in order of priority) are:
tardiness, truancy, drug use, and attire. With such a long list of unacceptable behavior, the staff
must prioritize which behavior we reprimand; furthermore, grade specific meetings have been
held to establish the priority of discipline. So in general, the school environment of BRMS is a
chaotic scene, where fewer students are meeting the expectations outlined by the Code and
Conduct, and more are constantly defiant and oppositional. I believe the majority of this
disruptive behavior is a result of the lives that students live outside of class; therefore, I do my
best to discipline without degrading the students that are oppositional. With a description of the
school environment out of the way, I would like to give a more in-depth look at the
demographics of the school and the characteristics of the classes I instruct.
The student population at BRMS is diverse, but a large portion of students are from low income
families, and broken homes (Porzycki). In addition to the general demographic information I
have observed during my time here, I will comment more on the raw demographics I have
acquired through the schools grading portal and a website titled: BRMS
is not Title-I school, nor is it eligible to become one. There are approximately 37 full time
teachers, and the student to teacher ratio is roughly 18:1. BRMS teaches 6th through 8th grade,

and has 660 students, of which 317 are eligible for free or reduced school lunches. The
following is the racial breakdown of the school demographics: 473 students are White (NonHispanic), 153 students are Hispanic, 12 students are of mixed ethnic background, 11 students
are of Asian or Pacific Islander descent, and 8 students are Black. Now I will provide some raw
information about the classes that I am involved with. I instruct four periods (referred to as
cores) of the same class (8th grade Language Arts).
In Core One, there are 23 students, 12 male & 11 female; of that 23, 8 students have health
issues, 7 students are involved with the LISA program, 4 students are gifted and talented, 3
students have specific legal plans for safety, 1 student has an IEP. In Core Two, there are 29
students, 8 male & 21 female; of that 29, 1 student has a health issue, 11 students are involved
with the LISA program, 11 students are gifted and talented, 1 student has a specific legal plans
for safety, there are 0 students with IEPs. In Core Three, there are 22 students, 15 male & 7
female; of that 22, 4 students have health issues, 4 students are involved with the LISA program,
0 students are gifted and talented, 2 students have specific legal plans for safety, 12 students have
an IEP (in some cases one student has two IEPs). In Core Four, there are 30 students, 21 male &
9 female; of that 30, 4 students have health issues, 4 students are involved with the LISA
program, 3 students are gifted and talented, 1 student has a 504, 1 student has a specific legal
plans for safety, and 3 students have IEPs. As is evident, the school is riffled with students that
either need special education or consideration when it comes to classroom management and
instructional implementation.
As I mentioned before, I noticed a lack of support from the external community. On the BRMS
website there is mention of a School Accountability Committee (SAC) that has monthly
meetings on Wednesday mornings, at 9am. These meetings are comparable to the PTA meetings
that are apart of many public schools; what makes the SAC meetings different is that teachers are
discouraged from attending since the meetings take place during class time. This seems to me, to
be the primary source of support that the school receives from the family and community
surrounding BRMS. Even so, the SAC does not seem like an effective forum, because teachers
are absent from these meetings. Besides the SAC, and the sheer ambition of concerned parents,
the school offers several extracurricular sports and clubs. In addition to the traditional activities
listed on the BRMS website, there are niche clubs that take place weekly that are offered to the
whole school. For instance, I assist with the Card-Playing Club, which meets on Monday
afternoons to play card games, and practice strategy.
BRMS is a place of shelter for holistic growth. A lot the students that I encounter on a daily
basis, are not the type of students that join student council and help organize school events. In
fact, I am aware of several students that seek refuge from their home-lives here at BRMS.
Though there is little to no support coming from the community; it is clear that the staff and
administrators here are dedicated at providing instruction and comfort to students that have been
severely disenfranchised on account of their social class, or home lives.